Nora St. Laurent is the CEO of The Book Club Network Incorporated and runs two book clubs near Atlanta, Ga., Former ACFW On-Line Book Club. Nora currently writes a Book Club column for the Christian Fiction OnLine Magazine and is a Book Club Talk Columnist for Novel Rocket. You can read author interviews on her Finding Hope Through Fiction blog, located at http://www.psalm516.blogspot.com, and reviews around the web at The Christian Pulse Mag, Title Trakk, Novel Reviews, and Suspense Zone. Nora and her husband run The Book Club Network www.bookfun.org
Boltonville Book Club Interview
Lisa Lickel is a Wisconsin writer who lives with her husband in a 160-year-old house built by a Great Lakes ship captain. Surrounded by books and dragons, she writes inspiring fiction. Her published novels include mystery and romance, all with a twist of grace. She edits, writes book reviews and interviews, and has penned dozens of feature newspaper stories, short stories, magazine articles, and radio theater. She is the editor in chief of Creative Wisconsin magazine and of Other Sheep, a Christian sci fi/fantasy magazine. Lisa also is an avid book reviewer, a freelance editor, a Port Yonder Press editor, a writing mentor, a ClashoftheTitles.com hostess, and enjoys blogging at theBarnDoor.net and ReflectionsinHindsight.wordpress.com. She loves to encourage new authors. Find her at www.LisaLickel.com.
About Boltonville Book
I also am part of the Kewaskum Bookies, which has been meeting for decades at the Kewaskum Library, though I’ve been with them only a few years. Those ladies are educators and friends, and also read very eclectically. We meet once a month through the winter months.
You are part of TBCN (The Book Club Network, www.bookfun.org). How has this site enhanced or helped you with your book club?
I like to see what others are reading and how different book clubs handle discussion choices. Since the local face-to-face book club I belong to isn’t strictly faith based, I challenge the group to read at least one faith-based book a year, so it’s helpful to find books that will work for our eclectic group who hail from all walks of life and beliefs.
What have you learned from other clubs at TBCN that have helped you?
I’ve learned how to find discussion questions, how to make up challenging questions to encourage discussion, and how to keep discussion flowing without getting bogged down or letting one theory monopolize conversation. I enjoy seeing the sponsorships, too.
What do you like best about TBCN?
I like seeing how different clubs operate, how many members other clubs have and how often they operate, and seeing all the material that’s available (it can be overwhelming if I spend too much time searching through different clubs’ lists). I also like the genre groups, even though the clubs I belong to are not thematic. The forum could be a real time soaker, too. Who’s read the Tale of Edgar Sawtell? I could really jump into those discussions if I didn’t have much else to do.
Any comments about TBCN and how it could be made or used in the future?
It would be helpful to have one place where clubs could post their selections as well as their discussion guides and representative answers. Another list of any authors who have visited clubs and are willing to visit either virtually or in person would be cool.
Good Suggestion, Lisa. (We have a big announcement that will give book clubs and book store owners easy access to what book clubs are reading and which books are bringing lively discussion to their groups. More information to come!)
What does your typical meeting look like?
Our group meets once a month on a regular basis, and the meetings last about an hour and a half. We volunteer for the hostess and facilitating duties, though no one has to take on these roles, and often others bring snacks or have questions or material about the books to share, as well. We usually meet at the local fire station, but often have our Christmas parties at a member’s home. We share the list of books we plan to read and discuss with one another, choosing books for about the next six months or so. The lists are available at the local library as well as our independent book seller, who offers the titles at 10 percent discount. Our meetings are often social gatherings. We set out the refreshments and eat as we talk. The hostess finds discussion questions, and anyone who has a special interest can also dig up and bring related articles or materials (like interviews). We end the discussion by making sure everyone knows the next book. We usually try lighter reading material in the summers and holidays.
How does your book selection process work for your club?
For this club, we pick material . . .
To read the answer to this question and many more, along with pictures from Lisa’s club, go to Finding Hope Through Fiction blog (http://psalm516.blogspot.com/). Lisa answers several others questions, including the fun question I just had to ask!
Remember, if you are a book club and would like to be featured here, please contact me. I’d love to hear form you.
Until Next time
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